Slowdown with over 40 windows open
Posted on 2006-05-02
We have a power user who multitasks his system to its knees. It is a Dell Precision 370 with 3.0Ghz HT P4 and 3GB of RAM running Windows XP SP2. This user regularly operates with anywhere from 40-80 windows open at once which include dozens of network locations, half the MS-Office suite including Outlook accessing over 10Gb of email, Adobe applications, etc. The system gets very slow and unresponsive and applications begin to behave oddly and occasionally crash, despite being painstakingly reimaged from scratch. The memory usage of the machine with all these windows opens usually does not exceed 1 gig or so according to task manager. The user is convinced that they need more memory even though I have explained that he has more memory than our core servers supporting the entire company. I suspect the slowdowns and misbehaviour are due to poor scheduling and management of resources by windows itself, and the sheer number of context switches the system must deal with. Are there any registry adjustments that can be made to improve this? Would multiple processors/cores alleviate the issue? The user is part of upper level management and "No" is not an acceptable answer. I am hesitant to build a dual or quad core workstation only to find it hits the same wall due to the windows OS.